Could Microsoft be the next in line to take a pot-shot at Apple's App Store approvals process? That's certainly one interpretation of the company's latest promo video for the Race to Market Challenge, Microsoft's competition intended to drum up submissions for their upcoming Windows Marketplace for Mobile download store. In the video, a developer is shown bringing his new app to a well-stocked application store, only to be rejected.
Video after the cut
At the same time, the voiceover suggests "If you want your app to do well, you’ve got to set it up for success. That means learning from experience, knowing when you could do better." You could indeed read that as a critique of Apple's approval system, which has recently hit headlines for rejecting various applications for what have at first glance seemed like spurious reasons.
However Long Zheng from istartedsomething has also been privy to internal Microsoft documents that "outright ban" turn-by-turn navigation apps from the Marketplace, which if maintained could make a mockery of this new campaign.
Alternatively, though, another interpretation might be that Microsoft are not looking at Apple specifically, but instead hinting to developers that they should focus on building apps for newer, emptier download services where they can gain more attention from users, rather than existing, well-stocked download stores where they might not so readily carve a niche.
Sly side-swipe or otherwise - let us know what you think in the comments.